Cub Scout Camp has begun and it’s been fun already. The part that I’m most thankful for already is the way Dominic is stepping it up to help out as the Den Chief.
He’s acting as my right bad man and is helping out with keeping the Cub Scouts in line. He started helping the younger scouts put up their tents right away, carried a lot of gear, and helped keep the other scouts heading in the right directions. Another part that was really awesome was that he volunteered to help lead the two scouts we need to help set up and clean up after each meal. He put a schedule together of which scouts would handle which meal and will be going with them to help show them what to do each and every meal.
It’s been pretty sweet stepping back and seeing him take the lead, it suits him well. I’m just thankful to be able to watch him grow right before my eyes.
Bud, you made me super proud today. I’m very impressed with how you’re leading by example and remembering that it is more important to take care of your fellow scouts than yourself. Thanks for being awesome Bud!!! Love you dude!!!
So much awesomeness to be handful for today! From new friendships, great training, taking time out of the whirlwind to work on long term growth, being able to make a positive impact on others and everything in between it’s been a steady stream of gratitude today.
The funny thing is that what I’m most thankful for is when I caught myself staring at the back of the airline seat in front of me…
Seriously, it’s crazy, but I’m thankful for staring down that head rest in front of me. Totally mundane, but when I stop and think about it’s deeper symbolism it hits me between the eyes. That is one of the coolest views in the world. When I catch myself staring at the back of the seat in front of me it means I’m going somewhere.
That view is the one I see when I’m amped up to go on vacation. It’s the one I see when I fly out to go to training. Same view when I’m flying out to train others. Every single time it means I’m going, and if I stay present I’ll probably be growing too.
But that’s only half the story…
The times I’m even more thankful for this view when I’m going home. It means I’ll see Becky soon and give her a long overdue hug and smooch. When I am looking at that seat the boys will be running up to me for a hug soon. That view means I’ll see our dogs and LuLu will possibly be so happy that she starts sobbing when she sees me. It’s a boon of a night of great sleep in my own bed. It means I’m thankful to be home.
It’s funny how sometimes there are these little things and moments that can make us appreciate other things more just the same way this view of the back of the airline seat did for me today.
Time to wrap this up and be amped for going home!!!
This morning I got up early like I’ve been meaning to all week 😉. After slowly waking up and stretching out I headed down to the fitness center and hopped on a treadmill. At first I was reminded of how much I dislike “dreadmills,” but after handful of heavy footfalls I started to cheer up and enjoy the ride.
As I was heading into the home stretch I started thinking of Dad. The music I had chosen started pushing me in that direction, but it turned into a full on shove as Avicii started blasting my ears. A huge grin stretched across my face as Broken Arrows started, and inspired by the song and the thought of my Dad running with me I upped the speed into ranges that I have no right to be running in.
For some reason while I was running and totally engrossed in the song (which was followed by The Nights) I pictured myself running on a trail with Dad alongside of me. He was smiling that smile of pride that’s been burned into my memories, one of many different smiles that he had. As I started to feel winddd he told me to keep going and even chided me a bit with some of the same old jokes that we’ve shared forever. The treadmill kept going, my legs kept moving, and Dad kept smiling.
At one point I almost broke into a laugh when I remembered a story he once told me about his first, and only, high school track race. Long story short, he tried competing in track without going through practice. He chose a race and took off like a shot out of the blocks. Sprinting, he passed everyone and couldn’t believe how fast he was going. Rounding the second bend he was amazed at the lead he had built… and that’s when he realized that there was more than one lap in the race… and was quickly passed on the last lap by everyone. It still cracks me up picturing that!
So on my run this morning there I am, going way too fast, and Dad was laughing as I remembered that story. Totally lost in my own little world I was smiling, jamming out to my music. Possibly singing out loud a little, and enjoying a run with Dad. It was awesome and an incredible way to start the day.
Dad, you may be gone, but it’s wild how many times I’m still feeling you near me. Thanks for that! Love you Dude!!!
Over the past couple of year my Express teams and I have worked very hard at living our three core values. They aren’t just words on a wall to fulfill a corporate checklist, they are a way of living our lives. Each of my team members knows them by heart and many difficult situations have been handled successfully by going back to them. Today was an excellent reminder of why they are important.
Due to the situation surrounding today’s specific reminder I’m not able to share the details of the situation, but I can say the following. We had a very difficult challenge that we were facing and when we looked at it through the lens of our values it became easier to see the necessary course of action, one that is usually saved as a last resort. Making this call is always difficult because it hurts us in the short term from one standpoint, but making this call also makes us stronger for the long term and is the right decision from the point of our values.
One of the books we’ve read a long time ago mapped out the concept of values and vision in a very interesting way. The vision is the end zone of a football field, it is where we are driving towards. The values are the sidelines, they help us know if we are in the right place. As we held to our values today we may have taken a small step back, maybe took a sack, but set ourselves up for the score in the next few plays. Without our core values it would have been much tougher to make the call.
The very interesting side note is that when we determined the appropriate course of action and made it happen there were some interesting results that showed us that it may help propel us further towards our vision than we ever could have imagined.
There are always many ways to handle a situation, today I’m so very thankful to have had the solid foundation of our values to work from, they really guided us in the right direction.
Once in a great while there’s a day that leaves me almost speechless. As I spend time in thought and consider all of the things for which I am grateful for the day there end up being almost too many to count, let alone one that stands above the others. Today was one of those days. As I stand back and think about it there’s one thing in particular that hit me… I have so many blessings in my life to be thankful for, and the ones today are just the tip of the iceberg of all things for which I am grateful in my life.
Each little moment, incident, or thing reminded me that I’m really living an incredibly wonderful life…
- Being able to have a beginner’s mindset and learn so much from a training that is meant for a beginner in our business. It’s meant setting my ego aside and thinking about how much I can learn as opposed to proving how much I know. Humbling at times as I realize that I’m wrong and have made mistakes, yet refreshing to see that the future is moldable if I’m willing to work on it.
- My career path is an honorable one, one I can be proud of, one that fits my values, and, most importantly, one that can have an impact on the lives of others. Being able to help people find work, helping businesses become more successful and needing more people, and helping others to reach their dreams is something that I am proud to tell my family that I do.
- The Express family is full of like minded individuals who want to help people succeed and are willing to go outside of their comfort zone to do that.
- As I have been blessed to have so many incredible mentors surround me throughout my career, I am blessed to be able to share their teachings with others and making sure that others know where they were learned. This helps me honor those who’ve helped me in the way they’d appreciate the most, by helping others.
- I have a tremendously strong relationship with Becky and my boys. We know what is important to us and are able to focus our energy on making that happen. We’re happy to spend time together and truly miss each other when we’re apart.
- Losing Dad has really sucked and I’m surprised by how many firsts there are now that he’s gone, BUT I have a brother who understands and who helps me through as I help him through. We are a team and will be okay through this because we have each other.
In addition to these there’ve been many things that I’ve been thankful for today, each moment a reminder of how blessed my life is. It’s not perfect and it’s not easy, but I’m thankful for my life. Today was one of those days when I can step back and tell The Big Man Upstairs, “Dude, You really nailed this one for me. Thank You for putting this much awesome into my life, it is greatly appreciated!!!”
Today’s training was great, but at the end I was ready to head off to my room to chill. My brain was full and there were too many ideas rolling around to even begin to think about anything else. I figured I’d go back up, slip into pajamas, relax and be asleep by 8pm. Sounds both old and glorious at the same time, doesn’t it?
As it worked out there was an opportunity to hang out with an old friend of mine We figured we’d go out of a beer, shoot the shit, and call it a night. Nothing crazy, we were both in the same mindset of calling it an early one. Next thing we knew a few hours had passed by and we’d had a great time catching up and shooting the bull.
Sure, we talked about business, that’s what we’re both here for, but it was more than that. We also talked family, life goals, values, parents, and spirituality. We were able to bond on many fronts and it was great bonding with an old friend.
Funny thing is that I had written a blog about being thankful for him a year and a half ago after he sacrificed a day to help me out. ( see Day 137 ). Spending time with him again was a great reminder for me of both how far I’d come since the last time we’d had a good chunk of time together and also how much his one day had influenced me. As I think back to that previous conversation I can’t help but smile as I realize just what an impact that talk had on me and how it helped get me to a very good place. Had it not been for his unbiased insight things may have been very different.
Throw in some talking tonight about my dad and reminders of some of the incredible gifts that Dad gave me and it was a pretty great night of conversation with Jeff again. It’s funny how stepping out of the craziness of day to day life has led us to some fantastic bonding time. We’ll have several opportunities for conversation over the next several days, I’m sincerely looking forward to them!